IRIS Metals, an ASX-listed lithium explorer, has secured firm commitments to raise A$7.5m ($4.9m) through a placement to support its lithium exploration activities in the US state of South Dakota.

As part of the placement, IRIS Metals will issue 7.45 million shares, each priced at A$1.

Petra Capital and Jett Capital Advisors are the joint lead managers and bookrunners for the placement.

The company plans to use the proceeds to fund activities such as resource drilling, regional exploration and acquisition initiatives at Beecher, a hard rock lithium project in the state.

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By GlobalData

It intercepted wide spodumene at the ongoing diamond drilling programme at Beecher and claims to have achieved better intersections so far.

Reverse circulation (RC) assay results from the ongoing drills are expected from the laboratory in the coming weeks.

The progressive assays from diamond drilling are expected next year as the company moves towards bringing out the maiden mineral resource estimate.

IRIS Metals non-executive chairman Simon Lill Said: “IRIS Metals is encouraged by the significant interest from international investors.

“The additional funds will allow IRIS to accelerate exploration and resource drilling activities at Beecher, as we aim towards announcing a maiden resource. Drilling results have been nothing short of impressive thus far.”

Lill is planning to acquire shares worth $50,000 through the placement. He can participate in the placement, if it is approved in an upcoming extraordinary general meeting.

The Beecher project is located near the township of Custer in the Black Hills.

It is situated on a 15-acre patented claim, effectively giving immediate exploration and mining rights to the owner.

The project includes the historic Longview, Beecher and Black Diamond mines.

In the 1950s Longview was mined for lithium. The lithium-rich spodumene ore was sent to Hill City for processing.

Assays from the RC drill programme has shown that at 60m, 1.21% of lithium oxide (Li₂O) was intersected. At 54m, 1.30% of Li₂O was intersected and at 40m, 1.10% of Li₂O was intersected.